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You’re never too old to learn at Deni’s U3A

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January 28, 2018

Deniliquin's U3A committee (from left) Barb Summers, program coordinator Helen Burnham, secretary Gill Fraser, president Alison Wilson, Airlie Circuitt, Jan Renwick, Marj Donohue and vice president Helen Thompson. Absent: Carol David, treasurer Sue Gatacre and publicity officer Gayle Beckton.

They say you’re never too old to learn, and Deniliquin and district’s U3A students certainly prove that to be the case.

U3A, short for University of the Third Age, holds fun and thought-provoking classes taught by local people for mature aged students, of which there are more than 70.

But the U3A committee would love more people involved and is inviting anyone interested to turn up on enrolment day next Wednesday at noon at Intereach in Deniliquin. There are new courses available, such as the aqua exercises class at the Deni Swim Centre.

U3A president Alison Wilson said the program is all about meeting new friends, learning new things and having fun.

‘‘The word ‘university’ may worry people, but there’s no exams or anything like that. There’s just always lots of fun and laughs ... it’s a mix of education and socialising and is a good way to learn new things.

‘‘We want to encourage and enable mature people to help each other to share their knowledge, skills, interests and experience.

‘‘We provide a creative use for leisure time by establishing and maintaining educational, cultural and physical programs for our members.

‘‘When it comes to the brain, ‘if you don’t use it, you lose it,’ so it’s important to keep busy, especially after retirement.

‘‘The social aspect is also a big thing as two of the highest risk factors for elderly people are isolation and loneliness.’’

Term one begins on Monday, February 5, starting with a one hour Tai Chi class led by Jan Renwick from 10am.

Held each Monday from 2pm to 4pm is the iPad and iPhone instruction class.

Thursday nights will feature the aqua exercises classes, from 6pm to 7pm.

Other weekly activities include sessions on meditation, play reading, various games, general discussion groups and an Italian lesson.

U3A’s timetable also includes a monthly book club and a guest speaker on the fourth Wednesday of each month from 2pm to 3pm.

Guest speakers already announced include Marg Jefferies, who will give an update on the RAAF Training School museum being established in Deni, and exercise physiologist Terrie Bootsman.

Term one will also introduce a four-week short course on the ‘European War - World War II’.

Program coordinator Helen Burnham said there will also be a new ‘Pathways to Deniliquin’ program this year.

‘‘This will focus on guests telling us how they came to be living in Deniliquin,’’ she said.

‘‘It will also focus on their careers, family history, community involvement and their life in general.

‘‘We would love to hear from anyone who is willing to share their reason for being in Deni and talk about their life or career as a result of moving here.

‘‘We’re also looking for volunteers to fill the role as a class teacher for one hour per week.’’

Mrs Burnham finished by thanking Intereach for its support .

‘‘Its staff are always willing to help out, whether it’s supplying a bus or having a room for us to use. They do a lot for the elderly and we really appreciate it.’’

For more information on U3A contact Alison on 0438894339 or Helen on 0400110749.

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